Welcome to a new Wildcard Wednesday! This week marks the end of my ninth year here on That’s Entertainment! Since June 17, 2013, I’ve published 1,455 original posts, and like we’ve done for every anniversary, I want to reflect on this past “season” and share a few of my favorite entries. As always, many thanks should go to you, my wonderful readers, subscribers, and friends — I’m so grateful for your support and kindness over these past nine years. I say it every time, but that’s because it’s true: this wouldn’t have been nearly as much fun without you. So, let’s take a look back at 2021-2022, where we talked about sitcom seasons that aired in the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s, along with a rich assortment of Wildcard and Musical rarities…
Musical Theatre Monday – August 16, 2021
I’m always glad when there’s synergy between the topics we discuss here, and this entry on the stage musical Grease actually proved beneficial for my then-upcoming look at Happy Days, another ’70s property about teens from the “rock and roll” era. In addition to sharing an audio from the Broadway production, I was also able to provide a clip featuring Lucy Lawless, who played Rizzo in the ’90s revival — a treat that harkens back to this blog’s Xena days.
Situation Comedy Tuesday – December 1, 2021
“The Ten Best FAMILY TIES Episodes of Season One”
One of the main Tuesday shows discussed during these past 12 months was Family Ties, a quintessential family sitcom from the 1980s — a decade on which I’ve been consistently critical, in large part because of series like this, which is not excellent, but managed to produce one of the genre’s best characters ever: Michael J. Fox’s Alex P. Keaton. So, although this isn’t among my personal favorites, it ended up being a really rewarding show to examine.
Situation Comedy Tuesday – March 30, 2022
“The Ten Best ROSEANNE Episodes of Season One”
Roseanne — one of this blog’s most-requested series — is easily the best Sitcom Tuesday subject from the past year, as it’s not only a show of respectable quality (for most of its run), but it also represents another important turning point in the genre’s development, as it pivoted the family sitcom away from fare like The Cosby Show and Family Ties, and their upper-middle-class artificially, into a more truthful, and blue-collar space. It was a pleasure to study.
Wildcard Wednesday – January 17, 2022
“Reunion With Elizabeth: Betty White Revisits Her First Hit”
In January of 2022, we spent the entire month celebrating Betty White, who passed away just shy of her 100th birthday. My favorite post dedicated to that sitcom legend was this one, where I dove into her early TV career and was able to share some thoughts on her first comedy series, Life With Elizabeth, ultimately offering a fun rarity — a clip from the late ’90s where White reprised “Elizabeth” for an anniversary special in honor of a historic local L.A. station.
Wildcard Wednesday – April 20, 2022
“Mabel Albertson Celebrates 420”
I’m singling out this post because it was such a silly, imaginative idea for a Wildcard — granting me the opportunity to not just sing the praises of the funny Mabel Albertson, but also to provide some updated thoughts on The New Dick Van Dyke Show, the titular star’s follow-up sitcom, which, of course, is not as strong as his ’60s predecessor, but is still deserving of attention, especially as an amiable entry from one of the genre’s finest eras: the early ’70s!
Thanks again to everyone who’s made these last nine years possible!
Come back next week for another Wildcard! And stay tuned Monday for a musical rarity!